At the end of July 2008 I found out I was pregnant. It was a "surprise" but one that Chris and I quickly adjusted to and were happy about.
About a week or so after I discovered I was pregnant I started spotting. My doctor sent me in for an early u/s and some blood work. The early ultrasound gave us a due date of April 1st and showed everything looked as it should for where we were at, but they couldn't see a heartbeat yet. My HCG levels were going up, not quite as much as they are "supposed" to so another u/s was scheduled. At the second ultrasound a heartbeat was found! We were so happy. As the weeks progressed the spotting stopped and I began having "all day sickness". I finally stopped being so nauseous sometime late October/early November and started to really show. I remember posting a "halfway there" status update on Facebook at 20 weeks along. I couldn't wait for April.
Then on Wednesday November 19th (my sister's birthday too) after a normal day at work I started cramping at home. At first I disregarded it, thinking it wasn't really anything. After going to the bathroom and having it recur I started to worry a bit about it. I looked it up on the internet. I read about braxton hicks and thought maybe it was just that. It seemed to be getting more painful. I called my aunt who thought maybe I should call my doctor. So I called the on call answering service. Sometime in there Chris got home from work. Before the on call doctor could call back I decided we should go to the ER. Once at the ER they sent us straight up to L&D. Upon an exam from a resident it was determined that my bag of water was visible/protruding.
My doctor came in to explain to me that my cervix was dilated and because I was only 21 weeks pregnant if the baby arrived there would be nothing they could do. It was very surreal. I thought, okay, so I need to lay here for 3 weeks... it could happen right? This baby wasn't really going to be born too early to survive was it? I was moved to a room and someone came in to do an u/s to check out my cervix. After that I tried to rest but the cramping- which I now knew was contractions- was getting worse. I was given a couple of doses of pain meds but they hardly touched the pain. Finally a doctor came in to do an exam and said that the babies head was right there. This baby wasn't staying inside. I opted to have an epidural and this gave my own doctor enough time to come back in. At 5:27am on Thursday November 20th 2008 Morgan Marie was born. She was 10.5 inches long and weighed 15 oz. She was so so tiny. She lived for mere minutes. Due to the medications and delivering the placenta I don't really remember her being alive. I held her for a moment before they gave her to Chris while I continued to push to get the placenta out.
We kept her with us almost all day, with the exception of a couple of hours while the nurses took some pictures and made molds of her hands and feet. Chris' parents and siblings all came to "meet" her and hold her. One of the hardest things we ever had to do was let her go that evening when we gave her up to the nurses to have her picked up by the funeral home.
The days following were so hard and emotional. Sometimes I felt numb sometimes all I could do was cry. We decided to drive up to my families for the week of Thanksgiving and just get away from town and our empty house.
We had planned her funeral for Dec 1st to allow time for my family to make preparations to come down and so that it was after Thanksgiving. She was cremated and we brought her home in an angel urn after the service.
I chose to stay home for a full six weeks before returning to work. When I did finally return to work it was very uncomfortable to be out in public and interacting with people again. My co workers were fantastic, other than my new boss who was hired while I was on leave. It was the customers who would say hurtful things (unintentionally of course). I was anxious to try for another baby, but we were following Dr's orders and waiting at least 3 months.
We love and miss our daughter every day, but she has most definitely touched and changed our lives in so many ways. We've met so many new friends because of her short life other mom's and dad's whose babies/children aren't here on earth with them. The loss of our daughter has brought Chris and I closer to each other and has also brought us closer to God. We've also gotten involved in the yearly March for Babies walk, raising money to help research and prevent premature birth.
It's one of the saddest hardest things to go through to have a child die, but she is waiting for us with Jesus in Heaven and there will be a day we will see her there.